Surgical treatment and outcomes of intramedullary tumors by minimally invasive approach

YÜCE İ., Kahyaoğlu O., Çavuşoğlu H. A., ATASEVEN M., Çavuşoğlu H., Aydın Y.

Journal of Clinical Neuroscience, vol.86, pp.26-31, 2021 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 86
  • Publication Date: 2021
  • Doi Number: 10.1016/j.jocn.2021.01.001
  • Journal Name: Journal of Clinical Neuroscience
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, EMBASE, MEDLINE
  • Page Numbers: pp.26-31
  • Keywords: Intramedullary tumor, Surgery, Minimally invasive approach, Hemilaminectomy
  • Istanbul Medipol University Affiliated: Yes


Intramedullary tumors are uncommon neoplasms which, without treatment, can cause neurologic morbidity or mortality. The goal of the treatment is complete surgical resection with a minimally invasive approach while preserving neurological status and also spinal stability. Out of 1972 patients with tumors of the spinal canal treated between 1994 and 2017, 168 intramedullary tumors of 417 intradural tumors have been presented. All patients had undergone one surgical resection. The mean age is 43 ± 12 years (range 11–67 years). Tumors were subdivided into 4 groups: cervically located-tumors (n = 43), cervicothoracic-region-tumors (n = 32), thoracic-region-tumors (n = 57), and lumbosacral-region-tumors (n = 36). The mean follow-up time was 37 ± 29 months. Gross-total resection rate was higher in cervical located intramedullary tumors compared to the thoracic intramedullary tumors. Cervical intramedullary tumors showed better postoperative functional outcome than the thoracic intramedullary lesions. In intramedullary tumors, extending more than 3 spinal segments, postoperative worsening was significantly increased. A minimally invasive approach (the bilateral decompression via unilateral hemilaminectomy) was used to remove the tumor while preserving spinal stability. Perioperative permanent morbidity was very low. Intramedullary tumors should be surgically treated as soon as neurological symptoms appear. Patients with thoracic intramedullary tumors and tumor extension of more than three segments were at a higher risk for permanent morbidity. The minimally invasive approach allowed complete removal of the intramedullary tumors, and adequate preservation of vertebral stability while providing a good postoperative course.